Green living is more than just shutting off the lights when you leave a room, growing your own garden, and eating organic, locally grown foods. By making small changes to your everyday life, you can help reduce waste, save money and live simpler. One way to incorporate eco-friendly values into you and your family’s life is by taking a green approach to cooking.
When going grocery shopping, try to purchase items that don’t use excessive or flashy packaging. Keep in mind that food should, of course, be packed safely, but also efficiently. Purchasing items sold in bulk can help drastically reduce the waste materials used when food retailers package items. Making a conscious effort to purchase food items in bulk, as well as ones that don’t use excessive wasteful packaging materials can help save you money as well as the planet.
After you are done grocery shopping and it’s time to cook, there are a few things to keep in mind while in the kitchen to save you energy, time, and money. The tools that you use in the kitchen to cook with can have a tremendous impact on how efficiently you cook. For example, if you use a six-inch pan on an eight-inch burner, you are wasting about 40% of the heat that is being produced by the burner. Cooking with glass pans in the oven is also another tip that can help save energy—you can cut cooking temperatures down by 25% and still cook many foods faster when you use a glass pan.
Using the smallest pot or pan that still fits the meal you are cooking is also a good tip. Oversized pots and pans take longer to heat, which wastes more energy and runs up your bills even higher. Deliberately purchasing appliances with “energy-saver” settings can also make a large difference in the amount of energy they use while operating.
Cooking in a more eco-friendly way is not only good for the environment, but for your wallet as well. Try some of these tips during your next grocery store trip or dinner at home!